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Helichrysum Essential Oil the Fountain of Youth

helichrysum-oil_fountain-of-youth

A beautiful annual flower, helichrysum is from the daisy family, named for its appearance – not unlike a burst of sunshine! Helichrysum is actually a whole species, with many varieties beneath it. Many are cultivated in the US for their ornamental beauty, but they are native to the Mediterranean region. Other helichrysum are from as far south as South Africa, and as well-established as to be part of traditional medicine in that region, as well. (1)

In historical terms, helichrysum has been selected for centuries, sometimes indicated as a gift to the Greek gods in the form of dried flowerheads. Now, it is more aptly considered a gift to us, with age-reversing capabilities and healing factors packaged in a delightful, bright flower.

All About Helichrysum

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When it wasn’t being offered to the residents of Mount Olympus, helichrysum had traditional applications for a number of conditions. Respiratory ailments, skin trouble, liver and gall bladder issues, inflammation, insomnia, and infections all came with a “prescription” for helichrysum. Not all of these uses have been confirmed yet, but one by one the scientific community is discovering that the ancients were wise when it came to their choice in remedy.

Helichrysum italica and H. angustifolia are the interchangeable names for the commonly used essential oil, though we can look at the whole species when gaining an understanding of the general components it carries. Within the essential oil, flavonoids, ketones, and terpenes exhibit strong effects, and while these components are typically indicators that caution should be used, helichrysum is an incredibly safe and versatile oil in terms of application. (2)

The effects that have been researched are convincing, and it’s no wonder that helichrysum is also called “immortelle” – the fountain of youth was an antioxidant-rich, essential-oil filled flower all along!

Benefits of Helichrysum Oil

The older the herb and essential oil, the more we have to discover. From generation to generation, ancient wisdom was passed along and honed, creating a cultural understanding of medicinal properties of local plants. Many factors have changed that dynamic, simultaneously leading us to information in other regions and losing some of the wisdom we might have had in our own culture. As scientists dig into the effects and benefits of these substances of old, one by one, we are finding confirmation time and again that traditional remedies are often traceable in science.

Here are some of the traditionally-held uses of helichrysum, and the helichrysum essential oil preparation in particular, that are finding traction in modern research:

1. Antibiotic Resistance Solution

Antimicrobial substances have been used for centuries, but the rise of modern antibiotics and subsequent overuse has created drug-resistant superbugs. Now, natural products are regaining the spotlight as effective treatments. In 2009, French scientists evaluated helichrysum essential oil as a potential natural antibiotic, and they were not disappointed. They noted that helichrysm essential oil (H. italicum, to be specific), “significantly reduces the multidrug resistance” of multiple bacteria. (3) This is a potentially lifesaving ability, potentiating antibiotic treatments when they are needed most!

2. Antimicrobial Activity

In its native regions, helichrysum is known as anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial. To begin to explore the validity of these claims, Iranian researchers tested the composition of helichrysum essential oil on both Gram negative and Gram positive bacteria, as well as fungal contaminants. The team concluded not only a moderate effect on both kinds of bacteria, but that helichrysum essential oil “had a substantial fungicidal effect on the fungi under study.” (4)

3. Stress & Burnout Relief

As part of a 2013 article in the Journal for Alternative and Complementary Medicine, helichrysum essential oil was blended with peppermint and basil oils to form a potentially relaxing blend. Individuals participated in a double blind, randomized, placebo study to determine whether aromatherapy actually exhibits relaxing effects. The individuals in the study described themselves as dealing with burnout and mental exhaustion. Since taking the time to take care of ourselves is a big part of reducing fatigue and stress, both the placebo and oils reduced the fatigue somewhat. However, the essential oil blend was much greater, confirming their ability to truly affect our brain and body systems, beyond placebo or general self-care effects. (5)

4. Anti-Inflammatory

When the immune system’s normal functions go into overdrive, painful and sometimes life threatening inflammation can set in anywhere from skin conditions to arthritis to heart disease. That places anti-inflammatory substances as one of the most important remedies and health boosters we can get our hands on. Helichrysum essential oil falls into that category, displaying anti-inflammatory effects in a 2004 article in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology. (6)

Where Helichrysum Shines

As exciting as these remedies and benefits are, helichrysum’s near legendary effects are found in its anti-aging capabilities. As I mentioned, it is sometimes known as immortelle or everlasting, demonstrating the folk knowledge that it may be a secret to aging well – or perhaps reversing the toll that age has already taken!

Anti-aging is more than another candle added to the cake – it’s a whole process, and any process can be slowed or reversed, regardless of what the calendar says. The key, almost undoubtedly, lies in the combination of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant capabilities of the plant and oil, with helichrysum being found as one of seventeen essential oils that remain highly active antioxidants even at lower concentrations. (7)

Oxidative stress is a major component of aging, which is a primary risk factor for heart disease. The very definition of oxidative stress is cellular breakdown, with free radicals wreaking havoc on tissues – hence the loss of collagen, stiffness and aches and pains, and so on.

When the body can produce enough antioxidants and is supported via dietary and supplemental antioxidants, not only is the breakdown stopped in its tracks, but the cells themselves can actually be repaired and restored.

Helichrysum as a whole herb remedy is one such antioxidant, and the essential oil blends stress relieving ability with antioxidant capability and anti-inflammatory strength to provide just what the skin needs to begin to repair years of damage, and promote heart health!

Recommendation:

Include helichrysum essential oil in topical blends as well as with Epsom salt for relaxing aromatic baths that address all stress, aging, and skincare all at once.

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Resources:

  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18606217
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24239849
  3. http://aac.asm.org/content/53/5/2209.long
  4. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22799105
  5. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23140115
  6. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15507345
  7. http://ghqscul.ishib.org/ED/journal/20-1s1/ethn-20-01s1-78.pdf


This post currently has 22 comments.

  1. Roxanne
    October 21, 2016

    (Brand recommendation removed by admin) Building a health Network is not about the money, it is about health, support in healing, and caring about each other while on this planet. So many lose sight of the fact that we are all connected, related, part of the One, the I Am, Source. Together we are strong, and together we can hold one another up no matter what our circumstances. I have my own health challenges and pray thankfully and with gratitude every day for the gift of essentisl oils which are a true blessing to have on my own journey that does not revolve around big pharma or the medical establishment that prefers to treat a symptom rather than find the cause and work on the cure. Whole, natural, unprocessed foods, herbs, oils, fresh air, sunshine, and love of Mother Earth and all she provides. Thank you!

      Reply
    • Customer Support
      November 23, 2016

      Roxanne,

      Thank you for your testimony and encouragement!

        Reply
  2. kate fiedler
    October 1, 2016

    Excellent review of the complexities of choosing a partucular brand.
    However, your distaim for mlm is inappropriate. This form of distribution is sometimes necessary because the product requires education fir distribution.
    I realize you are selling your own brand but be fair. I have unfailing trust in a mlm company whose standards for growing distilling abd insiring lack of contamination in any form are beyond question.
    I would very much like to speak with a representative from your company to see what standards you use.
    Would appreciate contact
    By the way I am a former editor and researcher for integrative md’s and David Willians. These people started the bandwagon that you ride on.
    Appreciate hearing from you.

      Reply
    • Dr. Z
      October 2, 2016

      Not sure what you’re talking about, Kate. Your assumptions are incorrect.

      1) I don’t disdain MLM’s. Many of my friends are distributors and we personally use oils from a variety of companies (some of which come from a MLM).
      2) I don’t sell oils. I educate people in a non-branded way to help them grow in their knowledge of oils.

        Reply
      • Kathleen Caldwell
        October 8, 2016

        Dr. Z I so appreciate everything you do and teach. It is of infinite help to the community! Again, thank you!

          Reply
        • Dr. Z
          October 9, 2016

          Thanks Kathleen! šŸ™‚

            Reply
          • Amy
            November 18, 2016

            I agree with Kathleen! Appreciate and love your articles! Thanks!

             
          • Dr. Z
            November 18, 2016

            Thanks Any!!

             
          • Oxidation, is great, I'm going thru chemo ANY INFO ON OILS THAT MAY HELP LOWER PH, MORE OXYGENATED BODY, LESS STRESS AND IMMUNITY IS VERY APPRECIATED BY MYSELF, PLEASE HELPTdonna
            December 4, 2016

            I’m going thru chemo, want to get started in the oils. I was told frankensense n muhr…but I need ph body, lots oxygen, desresser, anxiety
            Please help guide me and helping me understand which oils do whet

             
          • Customer Support
            December 9, 2016

            My apologies, but Dr. Z is legally prohibited from giving medical advice over email. He has, however, created a special Facebook group that can help as we have hundreds of members that are actively engaged in sharing testimonies of how they have overcome similar illnesses as yours. You can be part of it by joining his essential oil’s club here –> http://essentialoilsclub.info

             
  3. Theresa
    July 24, 2016

    Good Morning Dr Z.. What brand of helichrysum do you use?

      Reply
  4. Gisele
    April 18, 2016

    Hi Dr. Eric, could you please let me know the proper amounts each of the helichrysum and a Carrier oil like fractionated Coconut oil for the anti aging mixture.

      Reply
    • Gisele
      April 18, 2016

      I too am also very new to essential oils

        Reply
    • Dr. Z
      April 20, 2016

      Hi Gisele,

      All depends on what you’re trying to do. Most people find 3:1 a good ration (carrier:EO).

      Check out the Conversions and Dilution in this article šŸ™‚ –> http://drericz.com/aromatherapy-101/

        Reply
  5. Antonela
    April 14, 2016

    Hi Dr Z!Lots of informations and all are welkom,thank you soo much!What you advise me to use for low thiroid,improving immunity and helicobacter pylori?

      Reply
  6. John Parker
    January 31, 2016

    Best site I have see so far a lot of information. Do you have a book available with all this information in it. Thank you

      Reply
    • Dr. Z
      January 31, 2016

      Thanks John, appreciate the kind words.

      To get my eBooks for free click here –> http://drericz.com/eor-vip

      I will be offering these on Amazon for people that want a print copy.

      Many Blessings!

        Reply
  7. Lindsay
    January 29, 2016

    Hi Dr. Z!

    Do you have know if helichrysum can be helpful for infantile hemangioma? My 9 week old has one on her leg. I heard that helichrysum may help it, and possibly ylang ylang? Supposedly those are the only two, because all other oils would draw blood flow to the site, which would not be helpful, since it’s concentrated red blood cells. Any insight is appreciated. Since helichrysum is a pricey oil, wanted to see if you knew if it would be beneficial for that or not.

      Reply
    • Dr. Z
      January 31, 2016

      Hi Lindsay, I haven’t seen that in the literature, so I can’t say either way.

      If you do try it, just remember to heavily dilute. šŸ™‚

        Reply
      • Lindsay
        February 2, 2016

        Ok, thank you!! šŸ™‚

          Reply
  8. Karon
    November 30, 2015

    Hi, I would like to know what other oils are used in conjunction with helichrysum for oxidative stress.i took levaquin and have been suffering from its side affects. I’m new to oils but have already noticed some improvement.
    Thank you, for your help

      Reply

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